Interstate Cargo, a growing company, needed automation to get away from outdated processes and replace email approval systems in their organization.
Interstate Cargo is a utility trailer dealership and the parent company of the retail store, TrailersPlus. With over 75 stores nationwide, Interstate offers a variety of trailers: utility, cargo, enclosed trailers, and car haulers.
They have a wide range of customers, both business-to-consumer and business-to-business clients. This gives Interstate Cargo the capacity to meet various needs for its growing customer base; families needing a trailer for vacations or businesses needing to load equipment for a job site.
Interstate Cargo is a growing company with multiple new stores and ongoing hiring. The need for process automation quickly became evident. More employees and locations called for both new and updated business processes.
Most of Interstate Cargo's existing processes involved a heavy amount of email. One of the ways that email was being abused was employees using it for frequent and painfully simple tasks like getting a "Yes" or a "No." These back-and-forth email approval processes were usually disorganized, confusing, and slow.
"The need to get away from these processes being done within emails became more apparent each day. The drive for organized and structured systems naturally came to the forefront as our company grew." Robert Kiernan, Interstate Cargo, Software Developer/IT Operations
Once the need for automation was determined – the search for workflow automation platforms began. The company's CEO and Lead Developer started searching with these requirements:
A system that would replace their email processes
Altering internal applications to improve efficiency
Being able to increase company-wide organization
In the process of researching different platforms, Interstate Cargo found Integrify. After initial meetings with various software companies, they learned that Integrify checked all their boxes.
The first step of implementation began with learning how everything works. How will Integrify and Interstate Cargo's systems work together? Kiernan says that the initial implementation of the first workflow was a big step for the company. "Once we had everything set up and our API functioning, it's been a pretty smooth process switching from the 'old way' to Integrify."
Learning the platform takes some time, as with any software solution. Integrify has forms, processes, flows, rules, etc., which all had to be learned by Kiernan and his team. "With training and usage, the processes we built improved."
“Employees really like the user experience we’re able to provide using Integrify’s built-in tools.” Robert Kiernan, Interstate Cargo, Software Developer/IT Operations
Implementation on the backend of the software is one thing, but introducing new software to users is something else entirely and always a critical component of any implementation.
Fortunately, the roll-out went well. "Our users have taken to it quite well once they got used to Integrify's interface and saw how the workflows/processes work in a new light." User hesitation is expected when throwing the word "new" out to a group. However, Integrify was quickly adopted into employees' day-to-day work life because of the ease of use, productivity, and efficiency gained.
What They've Built
Since becoming a customer in 2019, Interstate Cargo has built many workflows, including:
With these active processes and more workflows to come, the team is staying busy.
End users can be anyone within the organization using the platform and processes they've built. For example, if an employee has a vital step in a process or needs visibility to specific workflows and steps within, they will be a user.
Their call center employees, store employees, some plant employees, and most corporate employees are considered end users.
These processes mentioned above have been designed to use specific rules that assist in helping Interstate Cargo's organization with accountability. Integrify has allowed Kiernan and his team to set up specific rules, such as only assigning the needed recipients to each task, rather than leaving it to be an open playing field, which was what had happened in the past. Controlling these rules has also eliminated "spamming" individuals with emails they have nothing to do with, which can significantly increase employee satisfaction.
"The results have been great," says Kiernan. Complete visibility allows upper management to see what is happening inside each store. Integrify allowed Interstate Cargo to get the right eyes onto the necessary workflows to ensure tasks and workflows are being appropriately managed.
By using the Integrify reports and dashboards feature, upper management also has been able to see bottlenecks that had previously held up operations and get to the root cause of issues along the way. Since implementation, bottlenecks have cleared up, and processes have run more smoothly. "KPIs have also been implemented since rolling out Integrify." KPIs are an excellent tool for Kiernan and end users to have the visibility to see how they are performing in real-time and stay "in the green."
So, what's next for Interstate Cargo? At the moment, all bases have been covered since coming on board. The need to break away from relying on email processes has been a huge success thus far. The following steps for Kiernan and his team would be internalizing other email processes still in place and transitioning to building out those processes in their Integrify instance workflow by workflow.